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The hostile environment for Conservative students on campus

The hostile environment for Conservative students on campus

Featuring Luka Ladan of Vassar College, a contributor to College Insurrection

http://video.foxnews.com/v/3512272537001/whats-it-like-to-be-a-conservative-on-campus/

Luka Ladan of Vassar College has been an occasional contributor to College Insurrection. Luka was one of the people responsible for inviting me to Vassar to debate faculty supporters of the anti-Israel boycott movement (I might have some news about that tomorrow).

Luka was quoted by ABC News in a story about What It’s Like To Be A Conservative on a Liberal College Campus:

When Luka Ladan started his freshman year at Vassar College in southeast New York, he started noticing a difference between himself and the majority of his classmates.

“We were talking about the upcoming election,” he said. “I was in a class talking about Republicans – Mitt Romney and Jeb Bush. Whenever a name was mentioned, one kid would snicker and then five to seven would just laugh at the name.”

When the 2012 election finally rolled around, it didn’t get much better for Ladan when President Obama won and the campus seemed to erupt in celebration.

“[All the students] were just packed into a building. Everyone was cheering, ecstatic that they won,” he said. “I remember sitting in my room because I voted for Romney.”

The College Republicans dove into exposing this demographic this week by starting a Twitter campaign called #MyLiberalCampus, encouraging conservative students to speak out on their experiences.

“Sometimes I’ve questioned my beliefs because so many of my fellow students believe in something different,” Ladan said. “Am I wrong with believing this? Is there something wrong with me? I remind myself that you should show resolve, but it’s tough.”

And there’s no College Republican group at the 2,500-student school, he said, because GOP supporters could “never manage to” get the necessary 25 signatures.

Luka also was interviewed on Fox & Friends Weekend, What’s it like to be a conservative on campus?

The easiest thing in the world to be on campus is a liberal, or radical leftist. It’s the easy way out.

Kudos to these students for standing up to the pressure to conform.

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Comments

DINORightMarie | April 28, 2014 at 8:05 am

Luka is a brave young man, especially since he does not have a Campus Republicans group or other conservative support network on campus.

Especially since he was on Fox, he will receive personal attacks now, I predict.

I sure hope he blogs about it, if so! College Insurrection ROCKS, so that would be the place to read more about it!!

Keep up the good fight Luka. You are way ahead of the others at Vassar just by being who you really are. Don’t become something other than that. My niece went into Syracuse as a conservative and within a year was liberal. She has graduated and is now in the real world and is already questioning liberal beliefs. Professors appear as Gods to many young minds and it takes a strong will to remain your own person. College campuses do not offer diversity, no matter what they say – the real world usually does. When reality hits them up side the head maybe then they’ll rethink their beliefs.

As a Conservative Instructor on a Liberal college campus I battle with this issue daily. Young Conservatives don’t need to feel like they must hide in their rooms or live in confusion of their own principles. Don’t be a conformist, instead use your time in school to study conservative works to help not only reinforce what your head is telling you is true, but to use as ammo against your classmates who often allow their bleeding hearts to drag them around on a leash. I’ve found more pleasure in deconstructing my liberal colleagues than I’ve ever felt threatened or put down on campus.

Other than being a minority, what hostility is the article talking about?

    LukeHandCool in reply to Zachriel. | April 28, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    I swear to God I thought of this same experiment one day when I was waiting in line at Whole Foods, irritated by the nonchalant (and therefore, slow) service of the young, too-cool-to-care, tattooed hipsters working there.

    This guy endured this from adults. Imagine being in a room with an ideologically hostile teacher and kids.

    He also did this in parts of my neighborhood. My wife would never let me do this around these parts.

    “Adventures of a Political Poseur: Pretending to be a Republican in Blue California”

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2004/10/political_poseur.single.html

      Interesting. The Red areas were 60/40. That hardly implies a stark partisan divide, and its clear that everyone would know people on both side of the divide. He didn’t provide the breakdown for the Blue areas.

      With regard to the student’s situation, while you might think even an 80/20 divide is stark, it still means, with a population of 2400, there are nearly 500 Romney supporters on campus.

      Now compare this to the only racial minority on campus, from a different cultural heritage, with few friends, no way to “pass”, a long national history of racial oppression, when even nice students gawk.

      Of course, we want the student to feel comfortable, but there is nothing in the article that suggests any sort of inordinate hostility.

        LukeHandCool in reply to Zachriel. | April 28, 2014 at 12:57 pm

        “Interesting. The Red areas were 60/40. That hardly implies a stark partisan divide, and its clear that everyone would know people on both side of the divide. He didn’t provide the breakdown for the Blue areas.”

        —I see. So you wouldn’t consider states that vote 60/40 for the GOP in a presidential election as Red states? How curious. 57-42, a 15-point difference, is generally accepted as a landslide in political elections. “Hardly implies a stark partisan divide …”? I hardly think so.

        “With regard to the student’s situation, while you might think even an 80/20 divide is stark, it still means, with a population of 2400, there are nearly 500 Romney supporters on campus.”

        —Yes, very stark, depending. Ummm, speaking of 80/20, didn’t someone say about 20% of Vassar’s students are Jewish?

        “Now compare this to the only racial minority on campus, from a different cultural heritage, with few friends, no way to ‘pass’, a long national history of racial oppression, when even nice students gawk.”

        —Few friends? Where do you get that? Why the millions of international students studying here? You see students gawking at black, Hispanic, and Asian students? Seriously? I lived in a small city in homogeneous Japan as the only foreigner for a time … and I was almost never gawked at. In today’s America you’re saying people on campus are gawking at non-whites? If you’re going to make stuff up, make up some good stuff. Your stuff is transparently phony and tedious.

        “Of course, we want the student to feel comfortable, but there is nothing in the article that suggests any sort of inordinate hostility.”

        —Being called “asshole” by a stranger walking by you is not hostility?

        Maybe you’re right. Maybe he didn’t hear the whole sentence.

        “Good morning, Asshole.”

          LukeHandCool: So you wouldn’t consider states that vote 60/40 for the GOP in a presidential election as Red states?

          Where would you get that idea? The point is that in an area where the divide is 60/40, then nearly everyone knows someone from the other side of the divide.

          LukeHandCool: How curious. 57-42, a 15-point difference, is generally accepted as a landslide in political elections.

          That’s irrelevant to the point.

          LukeHandCool: Yes, very stark, depending.

          As we said, even at 80/20, most everyone knows someone from the other side of the divide.

          LukeHandCool: Few friends? Where do you get that?

          It’s a common experience for minorities to be different, not only racially, but to the common connections people have.

          LukeHandCool: You see students gawking at black, Hispanic, and Asian students?

          We were obviously referring to periods of recent integration.

          LukeHandCool: Being called “asshole” by a stranger walking by you is not hostility?

          Was the student called bad names? It’s not indicated in the article.

          As for your “study”, it was obviously not done in an objective manner. For instance, we have the demographics for the red area, but not the blue area. Meanwhile, we have Bundy wondering if blacks were better off being cotton-picking slaves. Mighty white of him.

          LukeHandCool in reply to LukeHandCool. | April 28, 2014 at 2:03 pm

          Somebody get a doctor to examine my head for even trying …

          “As we said, even at 80/20, most everyone knows someone from the other side of the divide.”

          —Dear “We,” call a few more buddies over to the crowd gathered around your laptop. Maybe one of them will come up with something semi-cogent in your (plural) next reply.

          So, in essence, what you’re saying (and contradicting yourself simultaneously) is that this mythical, archetypical “racial minority on campus … with few friends” creature is fantasy.

          “It’s a common experience for minorities to be different, not only racially, but to the common connections people have.”

          —What does that mean? I’ve put that into Google Translate’s Standard American English, Queen’s English, Cockney English, Scouse English, and Hawaiian pidgin English … and the translation always comes out as meaningless gobbledygook.

          “We were obviously referring to periods of recent integration.”

          —You all were what? Can you voxlaborate and voxsplain?

          LukeHandCool: Being called “asshole” by a stranger walking by you is not hostility?

          “Was the student called bad names? It’s not indicated in the article.”

          —I thought you were talking about the article I posted. So being called bad names is your criteria for bias.

          “As for your ‘study’, it was obviously not done in an objective manner. For instance, we have the demographics for the red area, but not the blue area. Meanwhile, we have Bundy wondering if blacks were better off being cotton-picking slaves. Mighty white of him.”

          —I never said it was a “study,” and you’ve indicated time and again there is no threshold of political demographic breakdown you think is meaningful.

          Advice. It’s better to think of what your point is first, and then type. Order, dear boy. I mean, order, you all.

          LukeHandCool: So, in essence, what you’re saying (and contradicting yourself simultaneously) is that this mythical, archetypical “racial minority on campus … with few friends” creature is fantasy.

          No. When integration first occurred, minorities were very few in number, and due to the many other cultural differences, there were few connections between them and the rest of the student body. And there was real hostility.
          http://reimaginerpe.org/files/images/little%20rock%20student.preview.jpg

          Zachriel: “It’s a common experience for minorities to be different, not only racially, but to the common connections people have.”

          A recent Haitian immigrant with poor command of English will tend to be more isolated culturally than a Republican at Vassar.

          LukeHandCool: you’ve indicated time and again there is no threshold of political demographic breakdown you think is meaningful.

          That’s exactly the opposite of our point. We provided examples of people who are culturally isolated, but based on the article, it’s not the Republican student at Vasser.

          LukeHandCool in reply to LukeHandCool. | April 28, 2014 at 2:39 pm

          —Shirley, y’all must be kidding me. I didn’t realize we were talking about over 50 years ago. Silly me:

          “No. When integration first occurred, minorities were very few in number, and due to the many other cultural differences, there were few connections between them and the rest of the student body. And there was real hostility.
          http://reimaginerpe.org/files/images/little%20rock%20student.preview.jpg

          —You know, just a short time before that picture, my dad was a B-29 crew member. I doubt that at that time he could’ve imagined that one day he’d have a son (me) who’d marry a Japanese (the enemy) girl and he’d have half-Japanese grandchildren. Did he or my mother, of the WWII generation, think twice about their son marrying a Japanese? Nope.

          For a group that so loves the theory of evolution, you sure don’t believe in the evolution of societies … hell, you don’t believe they change at all … hell, you embrace stasis like you embrace statism.

          “A recent Haitian immigrant with poor command of English will tend to be more isolated culturally than a Republican at Vassar.”

          —Proof? More often than not most Americans welcome and help such people. My wife marvels at the acceptance and kindness she receives from Americans as a foreigner … to the point that she laughs she can get away with murder—so generous and inclined to give the benefit of the doubt are Americans. You could further research this mythical Haitian immigrant and come up with some evidence in a tearjerking screenplay, perhaps. Contact Pallywood for cinematographers maybe.

          “That’s exactly the opposite of our point. We provided examples of people who are culturally isolated, but based on the article, it’s not the Republican student at Vasser.”

          —So the mythical, Haitian immigrant caricature is an example? Oh, bruddah, you mad!

          I mean, y’all are mad, “We.”

          LukeHandCool: I didn’t realize we were talking about over 50 years ago.

          We’re talking about a student at Vassar and whether he is in a hostile environment. We used a comparison, just like you did with the faulty “experiment”.

          LukeHandCool: For a group that so loves the theory of evolution, you sure don’t believe in the evolution of societies

          Of course societies evolve. We provided examples, one from history, one more recent.

          LukeHandCool: More often than not most Americans welcome and help such people.

          We didn’t say they necessarily faced a hostile environment, just far more cultural isolation than the student at Vassar.

          Ragspierre in reply to LukeHandCool. | April 28, 2014 at 2:49 pm

          Mia Love, Haitian immigrant.

          TEA Party favorite for Congress in Utah.

          LukeHandCool in reply to LukeHandCool. | April 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm

          Rags, be careful.

          Too much cognitive dissonance could give him a stroke.

          Silly me. I mean give them a stroke.

          Ragspierre: Mia Love, Haitian immigrant.

          Mia Love was born in Brooklyn.

        Ragspierre in reply to Zachriel. | April 28, 2014 at 1:21 pm

        What a self-satisfied, self-aggrandized idiot.

        In 1968 I graduated from the closest thing there was to a public “finishing school” in my Texas city. Our senior class president was a black kid who was also my friend. During high school, I dated several Hispanic classmates. Nobody gave a rat’s ass about race.

        In my first year section at law school, there was a lovely young black lady who came from New Orleans. Both her parents were tenured professors at Tulane. I was the first person to graduate from college in my family.

As for the student, millions of people voted for Romney, so it’s not as if the student is a minority of one.

“[All the students] were just packed into a building. Everyone was cheering, ecstatic that they won,” he said. “I remember sitting in my room because I voted for Romney.”

Romney lost. Obama won. Sad yes, but how did this guy think that winners were going to respond to being winners? Don sack cloth?

Here’s a free clue bat for the guy – when we win, we cheer and we get ecstatic. When we lose, we watch the winners do the same thing.

What did you expect? And how did you get into college in the first place?

If it makes Luka feel any better, I read an interview with Parker and Stone (creators of South Park) and they said they considered themselves liberal non-conformists … until they attended university.

Then they said they realized that they had actually been conformists up until then … that liberalism was the establishment. It really turned them off.

I know “cool” is important to young people … but there’s nothing cool and edgy about thinking like the herd.

As Greg Gutfeld said, the true non-conformist on campus these days is the engineering student with back acne.

Dude, the coolest thing you can be is a polite, civil individual who thinks for himself. That just seems uncool because the uncool who fancy themselves cool don’t like it.

Cool is lonely at times.

Stay cool, my friend. And drink Dos Equis.

Back in the 80’s I had a far left Poli Sci Professor. We agreed on almost nothing but he never attempted to prevent me from advancing my position in debates. Neither of us tried to belittle the other and I received an A in his class. I imagine things would be a bit different today.

LukeHandCool | April 28, 2014 at 3:01 pm

“We’re talking about a student at Vassar and whether he is in a hostile environment. We used a comparison, just like you did with the faulty ‘experiment.'”

—We, (I’m guessing there are a couple dozen of y’all hipsters around that laptop at the moment). Does it bother any of you that the situation has flipped? Not righted or balanced, but flipped. That in the case of the meeting at Vassar of which the Professor wrote, black students were jeering white Jewish students for nothing but taking a class that would visit Israel? Put down that Starbucks latte, stroke that hipster facial hair, and ponder that.

“Of course societies evolve. We provided examples, one from history, one more recent.”

—Your recent example was fictional. Does that matter?

“We didn’t say they necessarily faced a hostile environment, just far more cultural isolation than the student at Vassar.”

—“Cultural isolation” is so vague, isn’t it? Maybe I felt cultural isolation being the only non-Japanese in a small Japanese city, but I didn’t notice this disturbing micro-isolation because I was too busy with all the kindly hospitality that the city’s residents showered upon me. My foreigner wife is constantly being bothered with instances of kindness and hospitality here in America.

Sorry, but unlike your fictional example, these are real examples of what really goes on in today’s real world.

    LukeHandCool: Your recent example was fictional. Does that matter?

    No. Cultural isolation is common in recent immigrants, especially refugees from their native countries.

    Otherwise, you haven’t really shown how the student at Vassar is experiencing a hostile environment.

      LukeHandCool in reply to Zachriel. | April 28, 2014 at 3:54 pm

      I submit to you as examples … all real and all present day … almost all the College Insurrection posts.

      Isolation, hostility, call it what you will, but it’s all there. Take a look take a lookers.

I was a student at the University of South Carolina when Ronaldus Magnus Reagan spoke on the Horseshoe in 1984. There was a small crowd of protesters outside the gates chanting, what else, “1,2,3,4 we don’t want your dirty war”. The protesters were quickly surrounded by a crowd of approx. 1000 people chanting “U S A……U S A….U S A” and then the scuffle broke out which resulted in a protester suffering a bloody nose.
Good times, good times. I doubt THAT will ever happen again, even here where the campus is fairly conservative.

Congratulations, Luka! The Vassar Conservative Libertarian Union is proud of your work.

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